New file tracker can track computer information leaks

SmartCipher automatically tags documents based on their location and content and continuously tracks them as they move between computers.

February 24, 2011 03:35
1 minute read.
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Israeli defense and security agencies are reviewing new technology that can track confidential documents by embedding a GPS-like tracker in the file to prevent illegal leaks.

Developed by Covertix, a Kfar Saba-based hi-tech company, SmartCipher is a filelevel rights management application that secures and monitors confidential documents and sensitive data by traveling with the file, inside and outside a specific organization.

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SmartCipher automatically tags documents based on their location and content and continuously tracks them as they move between computers, relaying the data back to the operator.

“Utilizing SmartCipher addresses the problems of securing data even when it travels outside the organization, and securing it even when used offline,” the company said.

Such technology could have, for example, prevented Anat Kamm from stealing thousands of documents from the office of Deputy Chief of General Staff Maj.-Gen. Yair Naveh when he was head of the Central Command in 2005.

Kamm was originally charged with espionage, with intent to harm national security, for having leaked classified information to Haaretz journalist Uri Blau.

A deal recently reached between Kamm and the State Prosecutor’s Office means that Kamm will not face a life sentence, as she might have had the original indictment stood. Instead, the maximum penalty she faces is 15 years in prison.

SmartCipher can track documents that are uploaded to a USB device, e-mailed or copied.

The system can work in two modes. The active mode prevents files from being transferred and controls access to files whether they are online or offline.

The other mode is called the shadow mode, allowing an operator to track a file and travel with it to trace the path of an information leak.

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